Today was the first of a 5 session class offered here in town by the local WSU extension office. Tonight’s class was on canning fruits and water bath canning.
Here are some interesting things I learned…
1. You can use smaller jar sizes than the recipe recommends but not larger.
2. Only use 5% acidity, or higher, vinegar.
3. If a recipe call for a longer than 10 minute processing time, you do not need to sterilize your jars.
4. Do not let your lids boil.
5. Do not use metal utensils to remove air bubbles (knew this one, but thought it was good to share).
6. New canning lids are only good for 7 years. After that you need to buy new ones, so don’t stock up too much. (Of course, you should never reuse canning lids)
7. You can use a folded towel in the bottom of the canner in place of a rack.
8. Smooth bottom canners are for electric coil stoves. Ridged bottomed canners are for gas stoves.
9. You can buy special canning elements for your electric stoves.
10. Canning outdoors is done at your own risk! (I’ll take the chance)
11. Mix 1 Tbsp lemon juice in 1 cup water to prevent fruit from browning.
12. The hot pack method will fit more food in a jar than raw pack.
13. If you use honey, you only need half of the amount. If the recipe calls for 2 cups sugar, use 1 cup honey. (Never give to children under 1)
14, Let jars sit in canner for 5 minutes after removing lid. Put hot jars on towel on counter.
15. Let sit undisturbed for 24 hours before testing for seal.
16. Do not store jars with rings on them.